Homebrew Pinball #3, Part 60

Cross posted from the original Pinside thread, this is one of many posts regarding my third homebrew pinball machine, creatively nicknamed 'P3'

Got the playfield reassembled and have been playing a bunch of test games. No buckling on the main playfield at all. I've got a slight bubble above the upper left flipper, I think I just tightened stuff down wrong though, doesn't seem to be changing. Have to be very careful no screws are rubbing against the edges of their holes, and to attach stuff in a 'wave', to make sure the plastic lies down flat. There's a slight drop in the plastic over the screen from the weight of the ball but not enough to affect its travel or anything.

Plays much faster with the plastic compared to the paper (who would have guessed?). I'm not getting occasional airballs off the center bank, which isn't great, and some balls are flying right over the eject hole. I'll have to make some air ball guards, and might also turn down the flipper strength some, since it's a bit too much in some places. If you hit the left target on the center bank from the right flipper it rockets down the left outlane too fast to see.

While reassembling I also noticed that some of the post screws are starting to strip. Some of these should definitely be machine screws, but that can wait.. for now I'm just upgrading to longer screws, since the ones I had were only going 1/4" into the wood.

The upper magnet continues to cause me issues. Despite doing multiple tests showing that it could grab a ball from ~2.5" away with no wood in the way, it still can't pull a ball reliably off the post for some reason... It might work better if I had the post above the magnet instead of below, so it'd have more time as the ball drops, but it's probably still be sketchy. Again I wonder if having a large metal core covering this whole area would work better, or if having the magnet under just 1/32" of plastic is equivilant....

If I position the magnet at the far right, it can grab the ball 75% of the time, but it drops it too far to the right and it doesn't feed the flipper well. If I position it more to the left it feeds cleanly, but can't grab the ball. there's about 1/8" sweet spot where it mostly works, but anything can throw it off, definitely not reliable enough.

Additionally, I'm also having issues where sometimes the ball comes around the orbit so fast that it actually bends the post and gets wedged in between the post and the wood on the right, sometimes also lifting off the playfield somewhat. If I can't get the post more rigid, I'll have to abandon it since it's getting the ball suck...

Posted Tuesday, November 16, 2021
at 10:29 AM

Tags: Blog Post, Pinball, Project, P3,

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